Home Buying in Sun City West>Question Details

pwsevig2, Home Buyer in Sun City West, AZ

We plan to move to Arizona in 3 or 4 years and retire near or in Sun City. Does it make sense to purchase a home now?

Asked by pwsevig2, Sun City West, AZ Mon Jan 7, 2013

I am renting out a condo that I own in the Seattle area at this time and being a landlord is not something I am too excited about.

What price appreciation to you expect in the next few years? Any wisdom to share?

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Chris & Michelle Spalding’s answer
Prices in Phoenix did come up considerably in 2012 as mentioned previously in this thread They rose from a very low point and it is my opinion that there is plenty more room for appreciation ahead. As far as being a landlord, the rental market is good right now and most places rent quickly. The answer will lie in your overall financial situation. If you can afford to buy now and not be a landlord, that would be the easiest. A good property management company should also be considered if you decide to buy and rent. Good luck in your venture whatever you end up deciding!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Feb 21, 2013
This is a great time to buy here in Arizona. The home prices have climbed 16% in 2012 and hopefully we will see that in 2013. Some areas have climbed higher and some lower, but the indications are the prices are on their way up.
As far as renting, if you are not living close by, then you should get a property management company to handle your rental. I work with a couple good companies that are in the Sun City area and their reputation speaks for them.
If you would like more information, you can email directly to callpolly@cox.net
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Feb 22, 2013
Hi there,

I believe you came close to answering your own question when you stated that you are not too excited about being a landlord.

You are the only one that can answer this question intelligently. However I am going to share some food for thought:

1 - being a landlord from afar is very, very challenging. And considering your current experience, I would think three times before becoming one.

2 - are you planning to spend time here from now until when you retire in 3 or 4 years? If yes, it may make sense to buy as you will enjoy the property now.

3 - some media outlets reported an average price increase in the Phoenix metropolitan area of 14% in 2012. It is a huge increase. However it is based on a very low bottom. Prices are still depressed. The expectation of most people I meet is that the prices will continue to go up. How fast is anyone's guess.

4 - in my investment models I am using a 6% appreciation per year over the next 5 years. It will probably be slightly higher this year, but I am very conservative.

5 - are you able (financially) to buy your retirement home now? Most people would need to sell their current home before they can afford to buy their retirement home. Some people end up buying a vacation home first and then when they retire they sell both their homes and buy their retirement home.

I hope this helps.

Jose Dias, REALTOR
(623) 418-5700
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Jan 19, 2013
Prices have already gone up somewhat in Sun City, Sun City West, Sun City Grand, etc. in 2012. Y/O/Y median prices comparisons by month show as much none to 30% during 2012. I would expect that those increases will moderate substantially, but the biggest driver is supply & demand. We live in Sun City and work in the above mentioned communities for Long Realty, which used to be Windermere down here. My wife and I were Windermere Brokers in Issaquah, but now use our Sun City homes as home base. We have the only website covering Sun City & Sun City West where you can view the floor plans and shop for those models by their model name. We also have the Home Price trends data on there. http://www.az-homes-online.com Take a look.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Jan 13, 2013
Please be aware that Sun City and Sun City West are two very different communities.

Unfortunately, no one has an accurate crystal ball for predicting what will happen with prices in the next few years. Real Estate pricing continues to be driven by a combination of the law of supply and demand, financing options available, economic considerations, and location.

I can share that activity in Sun City West continues to be fairly steady and I'm glad I purchased my home here over a year ago. There are still some great deals to be had, but you have indicated that you're not excited about being a landlord and maintaining a vacant home in Arizona is not something I would recommend.

Please feel free to contact me at (623) 396-9157 if you are not currently working with a Realtor and I can be of assistance.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Jan 9, 2013
Thanks for your thoughtful response. If we do purchase a home in Sun City, we would want a home we could possibly live in most of the year, maybe on a golf course.
What is the inventory like now of homes? Would there be any advantage to look for homes in any particular season of the year there? What price range do you think we could find a nice home for? Thanks for your response.
Flag Wed Jan 9, 2013
Here's a great read,

Now is a great time, get in while prices are still good and take advantage of today's pricing, rent and then retire. Let me know how I can help

"Living and loving Arizona, where you don't have to shovel sunshine" :)
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Jan 8, 2013
Thanks for your response. Do you work very much with over 55 communities?
Is there a certain time of the year when the inventory seems to be best?
Flag Wed Jan 9, 2013
The home market here is doing well and we expect the home prices to rise over the next few years. To the degree of price increases, we do not know but expect at least a 5 to 7% increase each year. You can purchase a home here and work with a rental company to maintain the property. I work with a couple of them that are very good. If you would like to get some more information please call me at 623-340-2461 or email callpolly@cox.net
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Jan 8, 2013
Yes, it absolutely makes sense to purchase a home now. We have seen significant increases in property values over the last 2 years and that is expected to continue.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Jan 8, 2013
Dear PWS:

Selling prices for homes are up in the Phoenix metro area 21% from a year ago at this time. This has made the Phoenix metro the fastest growing in price increases in the US this year. The Real Estate department at Arizona State University just predicted prices to rise the next two years with a 9% price increase forecasted for 2013. If you wish to see the research article from the Arizona Republic, just let me know. Mortgage rates are expected to stay low for at least another year.

You should way this with your personal situation and your cash and/or mortgage needs.

Right now home prices in the metro are at approximately 2003 levels.

Jeff Masich, Realtor, GRI, MBA
HomeSmart Realty
Scottsdale, AZ
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Jan 7, 2013
We specialize in the Phoenix West Valley and consulting with retiree's to help them find the best home and community for their life style. We looked at over 30 communities from the Carolina's, Florida, across the country to AZ where we've purchased 2 homes in the last 2 years, 1 in Green Valley just south of Tucson and one in Goodyear. There are many factors to considering prior to making a decision so this is a good time to start. Several of the builders have taken price increases as inventories in the area are down and building materials and labor continue to rise. You can search homes at our website without registering at http://www.JordanTeamAZ.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Jan 7, 2013
Most experts are projecting sizable percentages in home price increases.

If you have the resources, at the least it makes sense to check with a realtor and begin looking at inventory so you can see the increases in homes yourself. In my opinion, now is the best time to buy, while prices are lower.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Jan 7, 2013
I expect quite a difference in appreciation between the age restricted communities like Sun City and the surrounding regular family communities like Glendale, Peoria and Surprise. The prices in the age restricted communities are much more stable than the others because we don't have first time home buyers and half of our sales are cash transactions so we had relatively few foreclosures and maintained our values much better than any of the regular communities. Thus, while the regular communities suffered hugely, up to 60% down in the price downturn, the Sun Cities were only down about 30%. The regular communities are up almost 30% since 2011 while the adult communities like Sun City are only up about 10%. Prices of all communities here are expected to continue to increase over the next 5 years, however, and some pundits expect them to recover to their 2006 peak here in the next 5 years. Contact me at ralphcote@msn.com or contact me at 623-826-9070 to subscribe to my free monthly newsletter that will keep you apprised of the local housing price trends.

Have a great New Year!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Jan 7, 2013
Hi Ralph,
Since we are both going to be working 2-3 more years would you recommend we wait until closer to our retirement timeline to purchase a home in Arizona? I guess the only reason to buy right now is would be because we were confident prices would take an abnormal jump in price........and I don't think anyone has a crystal ball.....What do you think?
Flag Wed Jan 9, 2013
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